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Taylor Burton Jul 19, 2023 8:48:00 AM 4 min read

The Four "Ts" of Change Management

Thanks to the whirlwind that was 2020, you're most likely a seasoned pro when it comes to adapting to big changes in the workplace. We continue to feel the shockwaves to this day as some companies embrace a fully remote team, while others choose to bring workers back to the office. Changing times could also cause major changes to one's team size or budget. Or maybe your company is ever-changing to keep up with the latest technology.

One advancement that has captured the attention of our society is artificial intelligence. There's no doubt we'll see A.I. integrating itself into the workplace more and more in the coming years. If you'd like to stay ahead of the curve, join PBI for "Artificial Intelligence - Coming to a Law Firm or Business Near You." This program brings together industry experts to explore various aspects of A.I. in the legal field, including its history, definitions, and current landscape. Explore recent developments, delve into specific applications such as Chat GPT, gain insight into A.I.'s role in intellectual property, and so much more. Who knows? Maybe you'll be the one who introduces A.I. into your workplace for a sleeker and smoother operation.

If you're the lucky person in charge of making any kind of change, have no fear! Better to embrace change than struggle against it because, for better or worse, change is inevitable. Follow these four "Ts" of change management and you can help make the process less painful for both you and your employees.


Change Management Concept on the Mechanism of Shiny Metal Gears.



Humans are typically built to favor familiarity and resist change. Change means delving into the unknown. This can cause all kinds of stress for your employees. It might generate a fear of failure or even lead them to believe their job could be on the line. This is where transparency comes in.

Make an effort to keep your employees clued into the changes that will be taking place, but don't stop at that. Also explain why they are happening and how they will benefit the company. Be straightforward and clear about the details. If possible, create a timeline so they know when to expect these changes. If someone has tough questions you don't yet have the answers to, be honest about what you do and do not know. Listen to their concerns and respond appropriately.

Finally, be sure to empathize with your team. You're all going through these changes together, and you'll get through it together. 

Transparent communication will foster trust in your leadership. And what do you know? That brings us to the second T...


Business team standing hands together in the office



If you want to engage and motivate your team, trust is a requirement. According to this article from Forbes, a lack of trust in leadership leads to a negative workplace culture. Toxic employees may withhold important information, refuse to innovate, and ultimately do the bare minimum. On top of this, they may drag down the others around them. A low morale and bitter attitude can be infectious, contributing to the vicious cycle that all stems from poor leadership. You should never let it get to that point. If it does, prepare for an uphill battle, because trust is not easy to rebuild.

It all starts with you. You must trust your employees and acknowledge their capabilities. Give them the tools they need for success, to the best of your ability. From there, you must cultivate their trust of you and one another. Examine your leadership style and ponder what is working or what can be improved upon.

Only with a solid foundation of trust can you tackle intimidating changes in the workplace. If your employees trust you to lead them towards a better future, you will ultimately be met with less resistance, and (hopefully) a smoother transition.


Business team having video conference in the conference room



This "T" could come with a whole list of its own. There are many different strategies you could employ as new changes take root. The most important rule is to take as much time as you need, and don't expect changes to take place over night. It's going to require quite a bit of planning and effort. Create a list of tasks or a step-by-step process that will get you to your goal. As you proceed through it, monitor the success of the new changes and be prepared to address any problems that might arise.

Be sure to provide training if needed. If you're introducing new technologies or programs, employees should have adequate time to learn it. Provide training and resources so everyone has a chance to learn, and no one feels overwhelmed by new information.

Inviting participation from others is another useful tactic. It can give you valuable insight from a different perspective. Make sure to touch base with your employees throughout the new changes to see how they're faring. 


Smiling handsome speaker standing and explaining graphs on business conference in meeting hall



Tenacity is defined as the determination to continue what you've set out to do. As a leader, you have the power to do just that. Strong leadership and tenacity are what will get you over that finish line. It's in your hands to make sure change goes as smoothly as possible, while keeping up the spirits of those around you.

If you're ever feeling stuck, remember that even the smallest step is a step forward. Keep an open mind and open ears all the while. And every so often, look behind you and ruminate on all of the challenges you've conquered thus far.

Change is never easy, but if you follow the four "Ts," you might find it's not so bad in the end--after all, there's no growth without change.